Apple has shelved plans to launch a technical support centre in Bangalore, India, a report claims.

Apple had been recruiting staff for the operation, and reportedly intended hiring 3,000 people there by 2007.

Without warning, the India Times reveals Apple has engaged in a sudden about-face on its plans. It had hired its first 30 staff in April, but on May 29 announced its decision to lay-off its new employees, they are being given two months salary as severance pay.

Apple officials told them that ''the company is revaluating its operations and has thought of pulling back its Indian operations'', the report claims.

Steve Dowling, an Apple spokesperson, told the India Times: ''We have re-evaluated our plans and have decided to put our planned support centre growth in other countries.''

Some managers had been about to visit the US for training, the report adds.